As I write this to you, I’m reminded of all the opportunities I have been given in life. I’m grateful. When I think about the many experiences I have had, I realize that I’m blessed beyond belief. And as I look at my daughters, I’m overwhelmed with emotion, love, and pride in all that they are becoming and all they mean to me.
The opportunities, the experiences, and my friends and family make up my feelings of gratitude this Thanksgiving. I also recall what I wrote two years ago in my book Perfect Day and realize that the words written there are more true today than ever before.
“The things we are most thankful for are not financial in nature, but more core-centric.” Don’t get me wrong! Each one of us is in business for a reason. We work hard so that ultimately, we have money—and hopefully, lots of it.
But as you may know from reading my blogs, book, and listening to me on my Perfect Day podcast, the genesis behind a happy, thankful life is learning to put yourself and your family before your business. This is what leads to lasting and true happiness.
You can’t measure your wealth by the things you have accumulated in this life. “Wealth is measured by the things for which you would not take money.” —Dave Ramsey
Your assets are not always what you think they are, and they are not always where you think they are, either. When I meet a new client, the first thing I take them through is an initial Gratitude Exercise. Then I ask them about their assets.
Most people don’t know what I mean by assets and ask if I’m talking about money? I’m talking about so much more. An asset is something of value to you.
Our Core Family, health, values, relationships, and our spirituality are reflections of who we are and what assets we have.
Our Experiences This includes places you have traveled to, relationships you have forged, networks you have made, and more. But as a part of my Perfect Day mindset, I remind clients that some of their worst experiences can contain the greatest potential. Life lessons are learned from the mistakes we have made whether in business or personally. Hard lessons help to shape who we are!
Our Contribution I encourage people by explaining that anonymous actions that include volunteer work, charitable contributions of time and money are “gratitude” based assets. What are you doing to empower others without looking for anything in return?
Our Financial assets include cash, stocks and bonds, retirement accounts, businesses, real estate, and other material possessions.
Once you identify what truly matters, the rest will fall into place. I tell clients that if they take care of their Core values first, the money, the retirement, and the sense of security will come in abundance.
After all money isn’t everything. It’s not the “be-all” and the “end-all.” Energy, passion for your business, solid relationships, and health—don’t exist within an aimless 50 to 60 hour workweek!
Could I have more money if I hadn’t spent so much on climbs in different countries all across the world including my upcoming climb of Mt. Everest for cancer research? Absolutely!
Would my portfolio be thicker? Yes, but think of the many opportunities I would have missed. Time hiking with my girls, meeting new friends, experiencing life, and now the opportunity to do something that will have a lasting impact on the lives of countless women, who are battling cancer. #EverydayEverest
When a client comes to me asking if they need to save more, they are usually surprised to hear me ask, “Do you need to live more?”
If you live more and invest in others, you will end up making more and saving more. You will be healthier overall— emotionally and physically—and as a result, your medical bills will probably be a whole lot less because you are going out there—living life, engaging, and being healthy.
This Thanksgiving ask yourself what really matters the most? If material assets are at the top of your list, you are missing out on what is the most meaningful and what leads to true wealth.
I can show you how to change your life-investment strategy. Life in abundance is yours for the taking. All you have to do is to take that first step.
About The Author: Cokie Berenyi
Cokie Berenyi has been in financial services and serving the needs of individual and institutional clients and entrepreneurs since 1996. Mother, author, business owner, financial “samurai” and Perfect Day engineer, Cokie loves food, wine, travel, stray dogs, goat cheese, tennis, and alpine mountaineering.
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